Over the years, we have spent a ton of time talking about things like muscle patterns, balance, imbalance, and function of movement.  We have talked about how that function can be changed in both good ways for rehab purposes and how altered patterns can be detrimental when compensations have occurred in our body for whatever reason.  In this series, however we will get a bit more specific and talk about a few of the most important aspects of fascia and some of the issues we see with it in regard to pain syndromes.

Simply put without fascia we wouldn’t move. Fascia is a thin casing of connective tissue that surrounds and holds every organ, blood vessel, bone, nerve fiber and muscle in place. Fascia is what gives our muscles structure and allows them to transmit forces. Within the fascia we have three things: cells, extra cellular matrix and nerve innervation. 

  1. Cells – fasciacytes, fibrocytes, adipocytes, and various migrating white blood cells.
  2. Extra cellular matrix – jelly like structure in connective tissue and contains hyaluronic acid which binds to water to give it pliability and reduce friction.
  3. Nerves – gives us sense of where we are in space as it tells our brain if tissue is shortening, lengthened, compressed, torsioned, ect. 

We have several layers of fascia from the superficial fascia, deep fascia, epimysium and perimysium.  Each of this different layers have slightly different function and location within the body but can all be affected in similar ways.  Thickening or dysfunction of fascia can occur for several different reasons and affect our system as a whole. Negative effects on our fascia may be due to age, injury, overuse, surgery, and immobilization such as casting or immobility such as being sedentary. 

Stay tuned for the negative affects of fascial dysfunction.



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